Repetitive motion injuries and musculoskeletal conditions are a concern for a huge age range and are not just limited to older adults. Carpal tunnel syndrome is a condition in the wrists that can begin at any time in adults with certain risk factors and lifestyle habits.
As we spend more time on computers and cell phones, the chances of us developing carpal tunnel syndrome increases. However, there are multiple potential underlying causes of carpal tunnel syndrome that can be triggered by a wide range of activities.
The exact strategy for addressing your carpal tunnel syndrome diagnosis varies depending on its exact triggers and causes. However, most cases can experience relief through dry needle treatment, which helps reset the pain triggers in your wrists.
Causes in the Wrist
Causes of carpal tunnel syndrome all stem from how our wrists are shaped. The median nerve runs through each arm and is essential to your arms’ ability to move and feel. Like any nerve, the median nerve is susceptible to being pinched or damaged, and the effects caused by this damage may radiate out through a large area.
Nerves are susceptible to damage from a sudden injury, but long-term injuries and compression can also cause damage. The median nerve is especially vulnerable to being compressed because it runs through a narrow area of your body and because of how much we use our hands for everyday tasks.
Because this nerve is responsible for sensations in your thumb, index finger, and middle finger, it’s common for symptoms to include tingling, numbness, and weakness in these fingers as carpal tunnel syndrome develops. However, these symptoms can eventually escalate into more serious and permanent nerve damage. Even mild damage from a compressed nerve can become a serious problem and interfere with your ability to do your job and your overall quality of life.
Risk Factors for Carpal Tunnel
The exact causes of carpal tunnel syndrome can be complicated by a number of risk factors. Although there is a link between age and carpal tunnel onset, age itself is not as much of a risk factor as many people assume. Instead, the risk factors lie in a combination of preexisting factors and long-term lifestyle habits that can aggravate your musculoskeletal health.
Genetics can sharply influence your chances of getting carpal tunnel syndrome. Although this area is still being researched, a family history of carpal tunnel syndrome increases your own chances of developing it. Obesity can also increase your chances of developing it, in part because of the additional pressure put onto the median nerve.
Rheumatoid arthritis is a joint condition that sometimes has similar symptoms to carpal tunnel syndrome. Since rheumatoid arthritis involves swelling and inflammation of the joints, it can also cause pressure on nerves and contribute to carpal tunnel syndrome.
The biggest factor that is directly in your control is your overall lifestyle. Repetitive activities like typing, knitting, playing video games, and even writing by hand can take a toll over time if you do them full-time. Certain occupations, especially ones with manual labor may also be at higher risk of carpal tunnel depending on the specifics of the work assignments.
However, not doing any physical activity at all may also increase your risk of carpal tunnel syndrome.
The human body is designed to move regularly, and consistently not moving a part can cause it to deteriorate. You need to achieve a balance of activity and rest and carefully monitor how much you do repetitive motions, but you won’t have to give up your job or hobbies entirely if you get the right treatment.
Addressing Causes and Treating Symptoms
Although good posture and ergonomics can help keep carpal tunnel syndrome from getting worse, the underlying pain and discomfort usually will not subside without intervention. One very effective non-surgical procedure for handling carpal tunnel is dry needling treatment, which releases tension in the muscles.
The needles used in dry needling treatment are similar to acupuncture needles and do not inject anything into your body. Instead, they safely relax the muscles and trigger points that control your wrist and surround the median nerve. When these muscles are relaxed and in good working order, your carpal tunnel symptoms may decrease dramatically.
Dry needling treatment may cause mild discomfort at the time of insertion, but any pain should subside within several minutes after the needles’ removal. The pain associated with your carpal tunnel syndrome will also fade during this time because of the treatment. Serious cases may require additional dry needling treatment periodically.
Dry needling treatment must be done by a trained practitioner who understands how to position the needles for maximum effectiveness. Since the muscles of the wrist are complex, a massage or acupuncture clinic that is not specifically trained in this field cannot do it correctly and safely.
Looking After Your Health
Since carpal tunnel syndrome is a disorder that worsens over time, it is vital to identify and address it as soon as possible. If you have numbness, tingling, or weakness in your fingers and hand, it’s time to get it checked out by a medical professional. The underlying causes of carpal tunnel syndrome rarely go away on their own, even with rest or a change in occupation.
Wayne Massage has three convenient locations in the Sydney area to allow easy access during your busy schedule. We offer dry needling treatment for several types of pain and discomfort, including carpal tunnel syndrome. We even have a mobile massage team to meet you at your home so you can get the relief you need.
Our experienced and fully licensed team is ready to meet your needs and provide the friendly care you deserve. Contact one of our locations today for scheduling and more information.